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WD40 alternative - any good?

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Mike13/06/2014 17:06:50
713 forum posts
6 photos

Just wonder if anyone has tried the new "green" alternative to WD40. It's called XCP, is claimed to be better than WD40, and is said to be available at B&Q. I have no interest in promoting this substance - just curious, and don't want to waste my cash if the claims are just advertising hype..

Harry Wilkes13/06/2014 17:53:37
981 forum posts
63 photos

Not tried it but from past experience if it's 'green it's either twice the cost or no good smiley

ronan walsh13/06/2014 18:09:40
542 forum posts
32 photos

Whats wd40 good for anyway ?

Ady113/06/2014 18:10:55
3865 forum posts
522 photos

Whale oil is very good

Nick_G13/06/2014 18:18:24
1808 forum posts
744 photos
Posted by ronan walsh on 13/06/2014 18:09:40:

Whats wd40 good for anyway ?

The only thing I have ever found it any good for is as a solvent for cleaning away old oil and grease. - Which is nothing that parafin at a fraction of the cost would also do equally well.


Peter G. Shaw13/06/2014 18:48:12
1170 forum posts
44 photos

What's WD40 good for anyway?

Before I installed equipment heaters on my equipment, I used to suffer dreadfull corrosion (rusting) on my equipment. WD40 helped to keep it at bay, the downside being the smell, the messyness. and having to clean the equipment before I could use it.

It's also reasonably good at softening and helping to remove that sticky muckment left behind by labels etc after one has attempted to remove them.

It's also helpful at removing light corrosion from metal objects.

Like Nick though, I would use parafin in preference to WD40 for shifting oily, greasy muck.

I would point out that it can be bought in 5ltr containers: this being much cheaper than the aerosol versions. Mine, bought perhaps 20+ years ago and still going strong, came with a pump operated spray applicator similar to garden sprays. Unfortunately, they don't seem to last that long, but fortunately, the garden spray type fits the same container and work just as well.


Peter G. Shaw

Gordon W13/06/2014 18:53:30
2011 forum posts

WD40 seems to get a bad press on here, I don't know why. The green alternative I have not heard of, but as said above probably will not be as good, just from past experience of such things. First time I came across WD40 was after buying an old open Landrover that had been stood in a field for years ,a good spray all round, esp. the dash switches had everything working. Just bought 5ltrs. wish I'd done it years ago.

Nick_G13/06/2014 19:29:11
1808 forum posts
744 photos


It was originally designed / marketed as a water displacer. Hence the WD designation. Over the years is has evolved with much enthusiasm from their marketing department (for obvious reasons) into a fix-all magic product which was not what it was initially conceived as.


Phil P13/06/2014 19:48:02
658 forum posts
166 photos

WD40 is good for the clock repair business.

People think a quick squirt into the mechanism will be good for it, initially it does free things up, but after a while it sets like a green wax and bungs everything up worse than it was before.

I have had quite a few clocks through my hands that only needed the WD40 removing and correct oil applied to get them working again.


modeng200013/06/2014 19:56:31
232 forum posts
1 photos

Mick, so what are the common alternatives?


Swarf, Mostly!13/06/2014 19:57:42
544 forum posts
47 photos

Hi there, all,

When I was in my 'Amateur Radio' phase, a fellow Radio Club member squirted the wave-change switch of her communications receiver with WD40 - it never worked again!

Best regards,

Swarf, Mostly!

Neil Wyatt13/06/2014 19:58:53
18240 forum posts
714 photos
77 articles

My Dad always had WD40 in the workshop, and so do I. But he impressed on me at an early age "WD40 is not a lubricant". So we both always have 3in1 in the workshop too (which is no good for clocks either as it is castor-oil based so it goes gummy).

Many green products are good. Ironically, many 'eco-improvements' don't get any press because the manufacturers think people will stop buying the product! I recall that in the 80s used computer listing paper was worth a fortune as the quality meant it was used for high-end toilet paper, but you never saw these products advertised as 'recycled'.

You get more eco-washing up liquid for the same price from the Co-op range and it works well (yes, dishwasher out of commission). The allegedly more planet-friendly blue 'Diall' (B&Q own brand) brush cleaner knocks the spots off white spirit for cleaning brushes used with oil-based paints.


frank brown13/06/2014 20:01:41
436 forum posts
5 photos

I find that WD40 is excellent as a electrical plug and socket lubricant. It totally transformed the feel of my 110V plugs and sockets. I believe the active ingredient is palm oil, trouble is that most of it is carrier and evaporates away . Its also superb as a ali cutting/tapping fluid.


Versaboss13/06/2014 20:28:13
458 forum posts
51 photos
Posted by Neil Wyatt on 13/06/2014 19:58:53:

... But he impressed on me at an early age "WD40 is not a lubricant". ,,,,,


How true. I advise anybody who thinks that WD40 contains any kind of oil, take a sheet of white paper off your printer and put a splash of WD40 on it. It will get translucent, at least a bit. Now leave it for a day or two, and see what happens. You will not see the lightest remains, the paper is just as good and white as it was before. Repeat this with your preferred light oil and see the difference...

Before I forget: I use WD40 too, as a cleaner. For machining Aluminium I prefer the bespoke products of the trade.

Greetings, Hansrudolf

Billy Mills13/06/2014 20:59:37
377 forum posts

If you want to know the formulation of something like WD40 you can always look at the Material Data Sheet.

An old sheet described it as white spirit, light oil and an oderiser. It is interesting that the current sheet uses different terms but I don't think that it has changed much.

WD40 often gets used as a cutting lube however a few people mix up their own from white spirit and multigrade oil. Much less volatile than light oil some kinds of which can quickly evaporate.


Bob Perkins13/06/2014 21:03:13
249 forum posts
60 photos

Best thing for getting sticky paper labels and the glue residue off things.

Danny M2Z13/06/2014 21:10:08
892 forum posts
283 photos

Try Inox MX-3. It's lanolin based and works very well to protect slideways and is also a handy cutting fluid for aluminium. Of course it's Australian so maybe I am a bit biased, but it's very good.

* Danny M *

Mike13/06/2014 21:25:06
713 forum posts
6 photos

Wow, what have I started? I do use WD40 for cleaning shotgun barrels, and the occasional squirt as a water repellent, but that's about all. As somebody has said, "green" usually means twice the price and doesn't work. It's like gun cleaning stuff advertised as "as used by special forces". I don't think any country's "special forces" are into endorsing products.

Oompa Lumpa13/06/2014 21:40:34
888 forum posts
36 photos
Posted by Nick_G on 13/06/2014 18:18:24:
Posted by ronan walsh on 13/06/2014 18:09:40:

Whats wd40 good for anyway ?

The only thing I have ever found it any good for is as a solvent for cleaning away old oil and grease. - Which is nothing that parafin at a fraction of the cost would also do equally well.


Nick, parafin is £10 for four litres in my local Market Hall. But I wouldn't use WD40 for anything even if it was free. I do use GT85 quite liberally though and it is cheaper than both Paraffin and WD40. £3 a tin at Halfrauds at the moment.


ronan walsh13/06/2014 21:41:50
542 forum posts
32 photos

The only time i use it is if aldi or lidl have it cheap, no way would i pay full whack for it as imho it is overhyped. To preserve machinery during the winter i buy a litre of cheap super market oil and apply it with a rag or brush.

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